December 3, 2011

Gameday Blog: Bruins vs. Leafs

SECOND INTERMISSION

SCORE
TOR – 1
BOS – 2

SHOTS
TOR – 7
BOS – 10

After a dull opening frame, the Bruins and Leafs picked up the pace in the second period, combining for three goals.

Boston got on the board first when Nathan Horton made a beautiful feed from about 15 feet wide of Reimer’s post just along the goal line back up to David Krejci, who promptly buried it to make it 1-0.

But Toronto didn’t take long to tie things up. In fact, it was only a matter of 48 seconds. Mikahil Grabovski slap one past Rask from a funky angle to make it 1-1.

With 13:11 gone, Rich Peverley was along the half wall and sent the puck out front. It passed by Benoit Pouliot (intentionally, perhaps) and found Chris Kelly coming in the back door for an easy tap-in past Reimer to make it 2-1 Boston.

The two teams are a combined 0-for-4 in the power play, with Toronto going 0-for-3 through 40 minutes.

FIRST INTERMISSION

SCORE
TOR – 0
BOS – 0

SHOTS
TOR – 7
BOS – 10

Twenty minutes in the books here at the Garden where the Leafs and Bruins are scoreless.

The Bruins tried to get a little too cute on a few occasions. Brad Marchand got the puck at center ice and thought he’d make a blind, behind-the-back pass to a trailing Patrice Bergeron. Problem was that Bergeron was already gone by then, and the pass went right to a Maple Leaf.

Bruins fans still despise Phil Kessel (no surprise). They lustily booed the winger every shift, and cheered extra mightily when Tyler Seguin took the puck off his stick in Boston’s zone.

Tuukka Rask was sparingly tested. The Finnish netminder made a surprise start this evening and had a pretty easy go of it in the first period.

That, however, isn’t to say the Bruins were overwhelmingly sharp down the other end of the ice. Boston had ten shots on goal, but shy of a high amount of pressure in the first half of the frame, made things just as easy for James Reimer as they did Rask.

PREGAME NOTES

Here are tonight’s pregame notes (courtesy of the Boston Bruins):

STARTING GOALTENDERS: Rask (3-3-1, 2.25 GAA, .921 Save %) vs. Reimer
(4-0-1, 2.58 GAA, .912 Save %). Rask is 5-1-0 with a 1.76 GAA and .946
Save % in seven career games against Toronto. Reimer is 3-1-0 with a
2.46 GAA and .930 Save % in four career games against the Bruins.

100 STRAIGHT: The Bruins expect to hit their 100th consecutive sellout
tonight. In recognition of the 100th straight sellout, the Bruins will
be thanking fans with a commemorative poster and through a display on
Garden HDX. This sellout streak began nearly two years ago on Dec. 5,
2009, coincidentally against the Maple Leafs. The last game the Bruins
did not have 17,565 in attendance at the Garden was on Wednesday, Dec.
2, 2009 when they hosted Tampa Bay (16,553).

NOTABLE STREAKS: The Bruins have taken points in their last 13 games
going 12-0-1 and have outscored their opponents 59-25 during this
stretch… The Bruins have defeated the Leafs in their three prior
meetings this season by a combined score of 19-5… Tim Thomas’ current
9-game win streak is the most by a Boston goaltender since Andy Moog had
10 straight wins from February 27 – March 25, 1993. The club mark is 17,
set by Gilles Gilbert in 1975-76 which is also the NHL record.

STARS OF NOVEMBER: Bruins goaltender Tim Thomas was named the NHL’s
First Star of the Month for November on Thursday after going a perfect
9-0-0 with three shutouts. Toronto’s Joffrey Lupul was named the
NHL’s Third Star of the Month for November after tallying a
league-high 19 points in 14 games, including his first hat trick as a
Maple Leaf on November 12 against New Jersey.